Sunday, January 20, 2013

Sunday January 20, 2013

Ladies and Gentlemen

The snow has arrived; the skiers are happy; and there’s lots going on in Town. 

This past Friday, your Council held a special meeting to deal with one matter – how to protect the interests of the people of Midland in developing the Unimin lands that dominate our waterfront. The Town had learned this past Wednesday that the Unimin U.S. parent had received an offer to purchase the Unimin lands and was set to make a decision this past Friday. The Town asked them for a bit more time to prepare our offer but that was denied.

Town staff realizing that we could quickly lose control of our waterfront development vision recommended that we use a standard planning tool called an Interim Control By-law. The by-law would “pause” the situation for up to one year. The pause would give us time to complete the $70,000 Unimin lands study that the Town has embarked upon (see Thursday below) and to prepare a considered offer for Unimin.

The by-law was defeated by a vote of four to four.

At this time the Unimin lands are zoned for industrial and vacant-land purposes. Another aggregate operator could now set up on the site without any re-zoning. If that occurs the ability of Midland to direct the development of its waterfront will be hobbled for the next 20 years.

This will be the “hot topic” for the coming week.  If you have something to say, now is the time.


Tuesday January 22nd, your Council will hold two meetings dealing with the recommendations from the recent KPMG reports. At 6:00pm is a closed meeting dealing with personal matters. Then at 7:00 pm at Town Hall is the public meeting to discuss most of the recommendations, item by item. This discussion will help guide our services and budget for the next three years.

On Thursday January 24th at the NSSRC, the Town will hold a series of meeting on the future of the Unimin lands. In the morning, the Steering Committee will meet, followed by an afternoon meeting with local businesses. At 6:30 pm it’s the public meeting – your turn to tell the Town about your vision for the Unimin lands. The public meeting will begin with a short presentation and then break into working groups to consider how the land should be used, what access we want to the water and development features such as public areas. All are welcome.

I unfortunately will not be able to attend the evening meeting as I have to be Toronto, meeting with AMO, to discuss tax relief for our municipality.

Saturday at the NSSRC - the Alzheimer Society holds its Walk/Skate for Memories event. Registration is at 9:00 am, walking/skating begins at 10:00 and speeches at 11:00 am.  Get some pledges and come on out. Contact Ericka at

Gord McKay

Be part of Midland’s Year of Getting Involved - 2013.


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